Roger Rabbit and Pink Panther animator dies aged 86

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Acclaimed animator Richard Williams, who worked on hit films including Roger Rabbit and the Pink Panther, has died at the age of 86.

Williams, who was born in Toronto but moved to the UK in the 1950s, died from cancer at his home in Bristol, England, on Friday, his daughter Natasha Sutton Williams said Saturday.

Williams’ career straddled the “Golden Age of Animation,” which petered out between the 1950s and 1960s, and the rise of computer-assisted animation in the 1990s and beyond.

Williams had won three Oscars, three British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) awards and more than 250 other international awards, according to his website The Animator’s Survival Kit.

His best-known work may be as director of the animation for “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” a 1988 film that married live-action cinema and cartoons from all eras, a process involved the laborious insertion of animated characters into each individual frame and complex lighting effects.

Williams is survived by his wife and longtime collaborator, Imogen Sutton, their two children, and four children from two previous marriages.


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